PSA Media Releases – 1. Ben Coghlan wins 2018 Pharmacy Student of the Year Award 2. Joint winners for PSA MIMS Intern Pharmacist of the Year 3. Smart syringe wins big at Pharmacy Shark Tank 4. 2018 PSA Excellence Awards winners announced 5. Unlocking opportunities for pharmacists in 2023 6. Pharmacists to help guard against meningococcal 7. PSA welcomes expansion plan for pharmacist vaccination in NSW

1. Ben Coghlan wins 2018 Pharmacy Student of the Year Award
July 28, 2018

Ben Coghlan from the ACT has won both the 2018 PSA Pharmacy Student of the Year (PSOTY) Award and the People’s Choice Award, announced at the PSA18 Gala Dinner in Sydney tonight.

PSA National President Dr Shane Jackson congratulated Mr Coghlan on his exceptional achievement

“The PSOTY Award gives outstanding pharmacy students the chance to showcase their counselling skills to their peers and the wider profession,” Dr Jackson said.

“We saw many rising stars of pharmacy apply their clinical knowledge and communication skills in this year’s competition.”

The judges were impressed by the strong field of State, Territory and wildcard finalists:

  • Vanessa Koumi, University of South Australia (SA/NT)
  • Rhiannon Froude, Monash University (VIC)
  • Irini Moutsatsos, University of Tasmania (TAS)
  • Stephanie Figgins, Griffith University (QLD)
  • Ben Coghlan, University of Canberra (ACT)
  • Charlotte Earl, Curtin University of Technology (WA)
  • Katherine Pollard, University of New England (NSW)
  • NAPSA Wildcard – Gabrielle Wilson, La Trobe University (VIC)

This year’s competition was sponsored by Mylan.

The winner receives the National Travel Prize for pharmacy-specific education of an expenses-paid trip to an international pharmacy conference.

Mylan Strategic Program Lead Charbel Azzi said: “Mylan would like to congratulate Mr Coghlan on his outstanding achievement. All the finalists displayed well-rounded knowledge and the ability to apply it in a tightly fought competition.

“It fills me with confidence and reassurance to know the future of the profession and the industry will be in great hands. As a company whose mission is focused on creating better health, Mylan is deeply committed to supporting programs that inspire future scientists, pharmacists and physicians.” Upcoming students that want to win this award but struggle with completing their assignments on time can look up the best essay writing service reddit for help.

“PSA thanks Mylan for their fantastic support of this award,” Dr Jackson said.

2. Joint winners for PSA MIMS Intern Pharmacist of the Year
July 28, 2018

Talented intern pharmacists Angelica Lagoda (QLD) and Deanna Mill (SA) are the joint national winners of the PSA MIMS Intern Pharmacist of the Year Award.

Presented at PSA’s flagship conference PSA18 today, the award recognises intern pharmacists who demonstrate outstanding performance in their development as professional pharmacists, acting as role models amongst Early Career Pharmacists (ECP).

Ms Lagoda completed her internship at LiveLife Pharmacy Keppel Bay Plaza, while Ms Mill completed hers at Flinders Medical Centre in Bedford Park.

Ms Mill has contributed to PSA SA/NT ECP Working Group initiatives such as World Pharmacist Day and the PSA ECP White Paper. She has been described as an intuitive systems thinker, continually evaluating the environment and constraints she works within to identify opportunities to improve.

Ms Mill has conducted multiple interdisciplinary practice-based research projects within the Southern Adelaide Local Health Network (SALHN) to improve patient outcomes. Her research has been recognised through awards at events such as PSA17, where she won Best Oral Presentation.

During her intern year, Ms Lagoda became an integral part of the community and network of health professionals in Yeppoon. Mental illness was her central focus. She completed Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) training, got involved with her local council as a pharmacist representative to coordinate activities for Queensland Mental Health Week, and created a mental health service in her pharmacy.

She was a representative on the PSA QLD ECP Working Group and presented at the Rural Pharmacy Special Interest Group Forum at PSA17 on students’ perspectives on working in non-metropolitan areas. Her preceptor described her as “a bright, rising star in pharmacy who is years ahead of herself in leadership ability, initiative and overall clinical competence.”

Robert Best, CEO and Executive Director of MIMS Australia, MIMS New Zealand, eHealthwise and Board Member of the MSIA (Medical Software Industry Association) said, “MIMS has been and continues to be committed to supporting young healthcare professionals from all parts of the healthcare ecosystem. It is with immense pleasure that we support community and hospital pharmacists and the interns within them by providing world class medications information.

“Being able to reward excellence to young innovative people is extremely exciting for the team at MIMS. This is the 6th presentation of the MIMS PSA Intern Pharmacist of the Year Award. And, we trust that this year’s winner will consider to take advantage of the opportunities this award provides.”

PSA National President Dr Shane Jackson congratulated Ms Lagoda and Ms Mill on their achievements and dedication to the profession.

“The joint winners completed their internships to an exceptionally high standard, showing great initiative and openness to collaboration,” Dr Jackson said.

MIMS Australia is the leading sponsor of the award and contributed the major prize of $5,000 for the winners to put towards attending any pharmacy or educational conference approved by PSA.

MIMS Australia has been publishing medicines information since 1963 and is the leading supplier of trusted, quality, independent medicine information to Australian healthcare professionals, known for its high level of editorial integrity and independence.

3. Smart syringe wins big at Pharmacy Shark Tank
July 28, 2018

Professor Lyndal Trevena and a team of researchers from Sydney have taken out the Pharmacy Shark Tank at PSA18 with their smart syringe system that will potentially eliminate liquid medicine dose errors.

The pharmacy ‘sharks’ – PSA National President Dr Shane Jackson, Managing Partner of Epic Pharmacy Group Cathie Reid, and Senior Strategy Executive at Step Change Katrina Nielsen – chose to invest $6000 in Prof Trevena and her team’s innovation, SetDose.

Prof Trevena was one of three finalists who pitched their ideas to the sharks and fielded questions in front of a live audience about how they would address unmet clinical needs or advance patient care and pharmacy practice.

All three judges agreed SetDose tackled a significant issue in the healthcare system with a three-part solution that incorporates software, individualised encoded keycards, and a device that attaches to standardised syringes.

The sharks commended the system for attempting to “address all of the components of that issue, from the calculation of the doses through to administration.”

They added that it was a fantastic product for “an issue that hasn’t had any new solutions developed for a long time despite the magnitude of the problem.”

Samuel Keitaanpaa from the Northern Territory also took home $2000 and was awarded the People’s Choice Award for his innovation VeriPharm Medicine Tracking, an electronic system that can link physical medicine packets to their contents to create a universal record of when stock is transferred between parties.

The sharks said Mr Keitaanpaa’s passion for improving quality use of medicines shone through, and his product had a strong opportunity to increase oversight around medicine supply in Australia.

The sharks also invested $1000 in Michelle Cassumbhoy and Carson Au’s M&C’s Cream with Concentrated Oatmeal.

The panel congratulated all three finalists on their courage and dedication to bringing their groundbreaking projects to life.

4. 2018 PSA Excellence Awards winners announced
July 27, 2018

Three outstanding pharmacists have been honoured for their high standards of commitment and professionalism in the 2018 PSA Excellence Awards.

The prestigious Pharmacist of the Year, Early Career Pharmacist of the Year and Lifetime Achievement Award were announced at the flagship conference PSA18 in Sydney today.

PSA National President Dr Shane Jackson said he was delighted to congratulate the winners on their outstanding achievements.

“These awards celebrate the pioneers of pharmacy in Australia, the pharmacists who are leading the way in innovative practice, raising practice standards, and providing a model of practice for others to live up to.

“Their accomplishments are a reflection not only on their own tireless commitment, but on the profession. They are an inspiration for all pharmacists.”

The 2018 PSA Excellence Awards winners are:

  • Pharmacist of the Year – John Jackson FPS, from Victoria
  • Early Career Pharmacist of the Year – Dr Jacinta Johnson MPS, from South Australia
  • Lifetime Achievement Award – Ross Brown FPS, from New South Wales.

The Pharmacist of the Year, Early Career Pharmacist of the Year and Lifetime Achievement Award winners each receive a Symbion Education Grant valued at $9,000. The grants are possible thanks to Symbion’s long-standing support of the Awards.

CEO Symbion Brett Barons said the PSA Excellence Awards provide much deserved recognition of those pharmacists who have contributed so much to the profession.

“On behalf of everyone at Symbion, we extend our congratulations to this year’s winners and thank them for their dedication and for inspiring all sectors of the profession,” Mr Barons said.

“As a proud sponsor for the past 14 years, we are delighted to be supporting their ongoing education and efforts to provide an exceptional level of care to the community,” Mr Barons said.

5. Unlocking opportunities for pharmacists in 2023
July 27, 2018

PSA has released the Pharmacists in 2023 Discussion Paper to unlock opportunities that realise pharmacists’ full potential to address the health needs of all Australians.

PSA National President Dr Shane Jackson released the Discussion Paper at PSA’s flagship annual conference PSA18, which was officially opened by the Minister for Health Greg Hunt MP this morning.

Pharmacists in 2023 will empower the pharmacy workforce across healthcare, ensuring pharmacists are embedded wherever medicines are used, equipped with skills and opportunities to enhance community access to health services, and enabled through appropriate recognition and remuneration,” Dr Jackson said.

Initially, PSA envisaged a 10-year plan, but overwhelming feedback from members and the wider profession showed more urgent change is needed for pharmacists to retain their best and brightest and be truly regarded as medicines experts. As the peak national body for pharmacists, PSA has therefore committed to delivering significant change for the profession within five years.

PSA Manager, Policy & Advocacy Belinda Wood said the Discussion Paper is based on feedback from pharmacists and consumers as well as insights from international developments.

Pharmacists in 2023 highlights the need for pharmacists to transition to a consultation-based, patient-centric and collaborative model of care, where they take responsibility and accountability for medicines management,” Ms Wood said.

“Our vision is for pharmacists to deliver services tailored to consumer need, at the right time, in the right setting and with the right skill set. By 2023, pharmacists will be more highly valued and their role optimised. They will practise to full scope, operate as normative members of the health team and receive more appropriate rewards and recognition.”

In his Opening Plenary speech delivered through video, Minister Hunt said he was thrilled to have developed the $600 million Pharmacy Trial Program through the 6CPA with PSA and the Pharmacy Guild.

“This is helping patients, it’s helping the role of the pharmacist in primary care, and it’s helping the pharmacists themselves,’ Minister Hunt said.

Minister Hunt thanked PSA for its ongoing cooperation as the government develops more trials such as the Health Care Homes extension: “We are increasing the role of pharmacy as being a frontline in cooperation and collaboration with our GPs and allied healthcare professionals.”

He said the government was focused on enabling pharmacists as primary carers through My Health Record, expecting at least 75 to 80% of pharmacies to join by the end of 2018 to increase patient understanding of medications, improve compliance and avoid unnecessary hospitalisations.

PSA seeks the views of members, the pharmacy profession, consumers and key stakeholders to inform the delivery of the Pharmacists in 2023: Action Plan at the end of 2018. PSA invites submissions by Friday 7 September 2018 via

6. Pharmacists to help guard against meningococcal
July 27, 2018

PSA fully supports the Tasmanian Government’s expanded free vaccination program against meningococcal disease, which will allow pharmacists and other healthcare professionals to better protect the local community.

Following several cases of meningococcal in the Hobart area, Tasmanian Health Minister Michael Ferguson has extended the program to every Tasmanian aged between six weeks and 20 years.

Highly skilled and trained pharmacists are ready to play a vital role in administering the vaccine for this potentially fatal disease to children aged 10 years and over, one of the most vulnerable segments of the population.

PSA National President Dr Shane Jackson said, “This is a welcome response by the Tasmanian Government to a major public health need.

“The expanded program will help bring Tasmania in line with other states and territories, where pharmacists can already administer vaccines for a wide range of diseases including measles, mumps, rubella, diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis.

“Pharmacists have greatly boosted our nation’s herd immunity over the last three years by administering flu vaccines to tens of thousands of Australians, many of whom had never been vaccinated before.

“PSA has advocated strongly for the role of pharmacists as authorised immunisers, and this is another step forward in reducing the impact of vaccine-preventable disease in Australia.”

7. PSA welcomes expansion plan for pharmacist vaccination in NSW
July 22, 2018

A plan announced over the weekend by the NSW Labor Party to increase the range of vaccinations available for administration by pharmacists in NSW is fully supported and welcomed by the Pharmaceutical Society of Australia (PSA).

PSA continues to strongly support the role of pharmacists as authorised immunisers in reducing the impact of vaccine-preventable illness in Australian communities.

As the only peak body representing all pharmacists in Australia, PSA has a primary role in partnership with regulators, industry, consumers and other health professionals to promote recognition of pharmacist immunisation services, and to ensure these are provided safely, appropriately, and in support of Commonwealth and State and Territory immunisation strategies.

In welcoming the announcement, PSA NSW President Professor Peter Carroll said, “The initiative will significantly increase the immunisation rate, and by increasing herd immunity, it will have a very positive effect on the health of people in NSW.

“PSA believes Australians should be able to access pharmacist-administered vaccinations regardless of which state they live in.

“That’s why this initiative is very welcome and timely as it will allow NSW to ‘catch up’ with other states where pharmacists can already administer measles, mumps and rubella, and diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis vaccines.”

Australian pharmacists have been administering vaccines safely and effectively since 2014 and across all States and Territories since 2016.

Pharmacists are playing a vital role in both promoting and educating about immunisation, and in reducing the impact of vaccine-preventable disease by increasing access to immunisation in communities and particularly to individuals who previously would not have been vaccinated.

“The administration of vaccines by pharmacists complements the excellent work done by GPs, and increases the immunisation rate within the community by vaccinating people who don’t regularly visit a GP, or do not have a GP,” Prof Carroll concluded.

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